Two EU sources have told Sky News that Britain and the EU have made “significant progress” in the Brexit talks on the rights of European sailors to fish in British waters.
Now there is a “landing zone”, which includes a phase introduction and specific allocation for different creatures.
However, they said it was not finalized.
UK government sources told Sky News that “there has been no improvement in fishing”: “nothing new has been achieved today.”
Adam Parsons, Sky Europe correspondent, said: “EU sources say fishing is not their biggest concern – they think it can be done.
“The biggest obstacle to a contract is the level of competition rules.
“This is in line with what we have been reporting all weekend.”
As the Brexit transition period draws to a close before the end of the month, the UK’s chief negotiator, David Frost, is trying to reschedule talks with his EU envoy to Brussels, Michael Barnier, to resolve “significant differences”.
It came after an hour-long call on Saturday evening between Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission Ursula van der Leyen.
The two leaders agreed on the final impetus for reaching an agreement.
In a joint statement following their discussion, Mr Johnson and Ms Van der Leyne said “progress has been made in many areas … significant differences in three key areas: level playground, governance and fisheries”.
British sources later warned that the process would still be complete without a process.
A source close to the talks said: “This is the final roll of the dice.”
Environment Secretary George Eustis has previously accused the EU of making “humorous” demands for future fisheries rights.
He said the EU was pushing for “permanent” access to British water, while the UK was prepared to offer a multi-year agreement of up to three years.
Mr Eustace told Sky News: “The European Union (EU) has recommended a very modest increase in the number of fish in our own waters, but now that we have only half the fish in our own waters, it is simply not possible.
“There is also the very important principle that you cannot give any guarantee for a long period of time, otherwise you have a guarantee of permanent access to our waters which are not properly under international law.
“We are the only country in the world that can accept this, so a recommendation like this is ridiculous and does not conform to international law.”